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AN ILL WIND - Sneak preview.

I've had my first report back from a Beta reader, and she's very excited. Here's an extract from what she had to say:

Q: If you had purchased An Ill Wind, would you want to buy and read the next in the series?

A: "Oh yes, can’t wait. Hope this becomes as long a series as M and H. I’m never going to love JJ the way I love Meredith, but I know I’ll become very fond of him as the books continue, I can envisage running like M and H, I hope so anyway. As you’ve probably worked out. I loved it. It’s a real winner."

This put a huge smile on my face. Here's a snippet for you:

Chapter One

They say it’s an ill wind that blows no good, and for Amber Wilton it was. But it went unnoticed because she was happy. She didn’t know that the breeze lifting her hair from her face was an ill wind, and that as she laughed, her companion’s hatred of her had reached the point of no return.

After an amusing evening socialising with friends, and aided by a little too much alcohol, she giggled as she struggled to climb onto the low stone parapet of the bridge. It took a while, her short stature and top-heavy figure hindered her, causing a few false starts. Once finally upright, she adjusted her clothes and embracing the breeze that lifted her tangled curls, she held her arms aloft.

“I’m so bloody happy,” Amber yelled into the wind. “Oh, that’s cooled me down. Told you I could do it. Be quick, I can’t look down. I don’t think I should have drunk so much.” Amber saw the flash from the phone and leaned forward, her hand held out. “Thanks. One photo will do. Help me down before I go off the edge. I can jump down if you hold my hand.” She giggled as her companion grunted disbelief and stepped closer. “Don’t doubt me. I can do it. But brace yourself because I might make the earth move. I’m good at that,” Amber warned, wiggling her eyebrows in jest.

Her merriment wasn’t returned, and her laughter faltered before stopping abruptly, as the hand that should have helped her flew forward and banged hard into her thigh. It caused her to step back into the nothingness behind her. Amber’s scream was short and shrill as she lunged forward to grab them, grab anything, but her efforts were futile. There was nothing to grasp.

Amber plummeted backwards towards the stream below. The fall might not have killed her if the water level had been higher, but it had been a dry June and the stream was little more than a trickle. Amber landed on a rocky relief in the centre of the scant stream, her skull cracking open as it met the edge of a rock. She was dead before the water could find its way into her trainers as it ebbed gently past her feet.

Her assailant didn’t even bother to look, but hurried away into the shadows.

AN ILL WIND to be published on 31st March 2024

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